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A richly rewarding project

Student-led scheme aims to improve financial literacy and enterprise skills, as Julia Belgutay reports

Student-led scheme aims to improve financial literacy and enterprise skills, as Julia Belgutay reports

Astudent-led financial education project has been set up by James Watt College and 1st Alliance Credit Union in cooperation with Young Scot, which could see students gaining rewards points on their Young Scot card for opening a savings account and growing their money.

Launched today, the Credit Union project was initiated by the partner organisations to address the four capacities of Curriculum for Excellence and the lack of financial literacy among 16-19s.

It also aims to provide an opportunity for students to take part in a social enterprise activity. Learners are asked to organise, manage, market and operate the credit union with support from tutors and Credit Union staff.

"The recession and other changes in the economy, demography, labour market and society mean that the financial decisions people face are constantly increasing in complexity, requiring ever-greater skill to evaluate options," the project announcement read. "Individuals need the skills, knowledge, and confidence to compare products and services."

During the project, students will use the Royal Bank of Scotland's Money Sense website, designed to improve financial literacy. An Intermediate 2 unit in financial services: personal finance awareness is also integrated into the programme.

Young Scot has not only supported the project launch, but made it a "designated points provider for the Young Scot card rewards initiative", so students can gain points for opening a savings account, as well as for meeting savings targets.

According to the project organisers, financial capability is being able to understand bank statements, bills, payslips and other financial records; understand the implications of borrowing money; being able to use cash and non-cash methods of payment; manage a budget; understand the tax system and percentages; seeking advice when needed and knowing where to find it.

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